Why Louisa May Alcott?
To begin with the fact why should one even select Louisa May Alcott as their guide or a mentor, it must be first noted that when we choose a ‘hero‘ for ourselves, we tend to select the one with strong personality and most importantly who would be able to protect and fight for us. But when we choose a ‘guide‘, we must be aware that whether that person is capable of understanding where we are and would stand by our side in the darkest time, more than the fact, he knows the path.
It is important for us to learn: whether the guide we have chosen would be able to be a beacon of hope when the path gets dark? Whether he will be able to contain our fears and keep us inspired inside and out. In Louisa May Alcott, we find both: a hero and a guide.
She might not be a ‘mentor‘ to many as she is not quite known to many of us yet but she is absolutely the right human to choose as one. Though we are aware of her world famous ‘Little Women’, somehow we are yet to know how this very woman, sitting in her small room in the 1800s, wrote words after words which would be so much more meaningful in this present era.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, while describing his experience after reading Srimad Bhagavad Gita, wrote the following words in his journal:
“I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavad Gita. It was the first of books; it was as if an empire spoke to us, nothing small or unworthy, but large, serene, consistent, the voice of an old intelligence which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us.”(Journals 1 October 1848)
What stuck with me was the last part of the sentence: “…the voice of an old intelligence which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us.” Louisa May Alcott’s words are those words of intelligence and wisdom she bestowed upon the future generations through her works which exercise us even after more than a century.
Through all her life’s trouble and the harshest of the dilemmas, she held herself and her morals together and made use of her creative skills to express herself. Though her castle in the air of ‘fame’ and ‘fortune’ came true, but constant sacrifices had to be made to keep herself grounded in the storm that was blowing past her life.
Louisa May Alcott is an American Hero and she has earned herself that position. She was born in a family of revolutionaries, her maternal great grandfather, Samuel Adams, being the one who “had signaled the start of the Boston Tea Party in 1773” (Harriet Reisen’s biography in Louisa May Alcott), her father Amos Bronson Alcott, being a Transcendentalist along with his friends Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Elizabeth Peabody, Margaret Fuller and the likes of many other eminent personalities, who practically raised the little Alcott girls during their childhood.
Louisa May Alcott is the perfect example of a woman, who can fight for herself as well as for her family. She did not marry but she did perform the duties to her family devotedly and was practically a caregiver alongside a provider. Her father, Amos Bronson Alcott, often said that Providence will provide and who knew their Providence was sitting with a pen and paper all along in their very home.
Though it is quite unfortunate that we never got the opportunity to read the autobiography she was planning on writing, but we have, in this present times, some brilliant authors, who have researched on Louisa May Alcott and her life and family, and have brought before us some interesting facts about Miss Alcott, which are definitely worthy of reading.
Quite literally, each and every one of her works, from moral tales for children, plays written in adolescence to her adult fictions, everyone of them has a worthy enough quote to guide the reader. Most importantly, thanks to her descriptive journal writing, we, sitting in the present age, can find some interesting facts about the struggles of those times and we can easily co-relate to her as some of them are very much under practice in the present age as well.
To me, Louisa May Alcott is a true guiding light, as I found about her in my darkest time and ever since the moment I came to learn about her struggles, mine seemed to be petitte and I unknowingly devoted myself into knowing about this woman; and I feel so glad to have found about this person. Whenever I am feeling low, I open up one of her stories and start reading it and I know, I am bound to find an answer in them.